13 Study Abroad Students Dead in Spain Bus Crash

A bus traveling carrying several European study abroad students from the popular program Erasmus was in a severe accident on Sunday. There were 13 fatalities, seven of which were Italian students. Thirty-four more students were injured.

The students were studying at the University of Barcelona for the semester and were on a program trip when the accident occurred at 6 a.m., when the bus crossed the median and collided with an oncoming car.

The most alarming thing about the crash is the idea that it might have been preventable.

Alessandro Saracino, mother of victim Serena Saracino, 22, questioned why the bus was traveling so early in the morning. “What I ask is that these things never happen again,” Saracino told the Guardian. “In a beautiful country like this, these kids should have been guaranteed a trip in complete safety. Driving at four in the morning, through the rain, is not safe.”

However, NBC News reports that the road conditions were good at the time, and that authorities believe the crash was due to human error.

Tallulah Lyons, a British student from Southhampton University was injured in the crash. She explained the chaos at the scene to the Guardian.

“I remember waking up with people screaming. At that point I think we got hit by another car, but I’m not sure, I don’t remember a lot. It took two hours to get everyone out of the bus. It was people who were trapped who died.”

The accident is a terrible tragedy, and hits particularly close to home for those of us studying abroad. Our thoughts are with the families of these students.